Dad of 1
When you can’t be there

Over the past several weeks, my little guy’s behavior at his mom’s house has been anything but good.

He’s thrown fits that include nothing short of the whole kitchen sink. Crying, screaming, hitting, throwing things and using some pretty hurtful words.

These fits of rage happen at the drop of a hat. It’s fighting with his little brother, it’s not following directions and it’s his overall attitude.

My ex and I have talked to him separately about his behavior. He has told me it is hard for him going back to his mom’s house. My only thought is that maybe he isn’t the center of attention when he’s with her. There’s a step dad and brother.

I got a video sent to me this evening of my boy, butt naked and screaming at his mom to get away from him. He had just got out of the bath and was obviously not in a good mood. Apparently he was upset that he had to take a bath. His younger brother wanted him to join, so he did, but very reluctantly. My ex asked him to appease his brother, but this obviously didn’t work and led to a meltdown.

The ex called. She was shaken. He cried the entire 12 minutes we were on the phone. I tried calming him. It didn’t work. We pleaded with him to slow his breathing and to remember that no one was mad, we just needed to talk him through his poor decisions.

She texted about 40 minutes later, he had fallen asleep. I actually felt bad for her tonight because he doesn’t pull this shit with me. I just wanted to be there to hug him.

Co-parenting is hard.

My ex lost it

On me. At 7:15 this morning. 

Her high level of emotions were off the charts. Surprised by this attack, I couldn’t even respond or attempt to calm her down. Shit, I couldn’t even get a word in.

It was about our son.

To quote her sporadically;

"I am done. I won’t do this anymore. He is a spoiled brat. Here is yours, full time. I don’t want to see him. I didn’t raise him this way."

Apparently, the boy, who is 5, is having some behavior issues. He doesn’t mesh with his brother who is 1.5 years old. He is disrespectful to the ex and step dad. He talks back, he yells, he throws things and pushes his little brother. 

He keeps claiming he has a tummy ache when he is trouble. He cries. We (the ex and I) think it is anxiety and his way of getting out of trouble. This didn’t fly last night. Since he has had bowel issues in the past, it worked initially.

He was sent to bed early. He didn’t speak to his mom this morning. She refused to take him to day care and insisted her husband take him. She told him when he left that he was staying at dads for awhile. 

He then repeated this to the day care staff. Great. Embarrassing. 

Other than crushing my kids heart, she also cut me too. Somewhere in the midst of her tirade, she told me that he acts just like me. He has the same mannerisms. He is your kid. 

After the rant was over, and this went on for a solid 10 minutes, I just told her I would have a talk with him this evening. I reminded her how happy he makes us and what a wonderful kid he really is. She said, “FINE, BYE.”

Do I have some shortcomings? Short fuse? Yep. Am I working on them and more importantly improving on these shortcomings? You bet your ass. 

I think the ex sometimes forgets that he is 5. Of course he knows better, but he is going to push our buttons. The thing he doesn’t understand is that his brother is 1.5 and doesn’t have the ability to comprehend the things a 5 year old does. They fight in the normal way any siblings would.

What upset me the most was that she completely hurt our boy. When I sat him down after dinner, he asked me if he was staying here forever. He asked why mom was mean. He asked if I loved him. These are questions no kid should ever ask.

Out talk was wonderful. He understood. He grasped the concept of being an older brother. About being respectful to adults.

I don’t think I will even contact the ex. I don’t feel she has cooled off quite yet. I am more concerned about our son.

It’s been one helluva week so far. This and work have been a plate full.

Listening to some music and sipping some bourbon to end my night.  

I swear

That my kid makes me start my work day later and later each day. He even tries to talk me into not going to work.

This morning it was ninja fighting with these little figurines.

Oh well, at least its a fun way to start my day.

Dinner Conversation - Penis and Vagina

Preparing dinner tonight, I tried to get my son away from the hot wheels and focused on a nice dinner with meaningful conversation. Wishful thinking considering he is 5. 

As we sit down to eat, I asked what he did at Kids Club today. I was totally expecting the norm; we played, we colored, we went outside, we read books. Oh no, I was thrown a curve ball. The one that buckles your knees.

He said, “Dad, did you know that girls pee out of their butts? Why?”

"Bud, they don’t pee out of their butts. They pee from their female organ. Do you know what the male organ is called?"

He shouts, “PENIS!!”

"Good, well the female organ is called a vagina."

"Them don’t have a penis?"

"Nope, a vagina."

"That’s a funny word dad……..We played soccer today dad, I scored two goals. 

And on went a normal dinner. My favorite part of the day.

 

How come it didn’t work?

Some of the tactics my folks used to get me to eat the right foods do not work on my son.

Either he is too smart, or I was really dumb.

All of a sudden he doesn’t like the crust on his bread. This is after I made it and packed it away in his backpack. Not wanting to unpack his lunch, I said “Hey bud, if you eat the crust it’ll put hair on your chest.”

His reply, “Dad, that’s gross.”

I unpacked the lunch and cut off the crust.

Kid 1, Dad 0

Homework and dinner……..half naked and with a tattoo.

Homework and dinner……..half naked and with a tattoo.

Truthful Tuesday

My son ate a penny at school yesterday. I am now “turd diving” to find this penny. He wants to put it in his piggy bank once it passes. Gross. Being a parent rules!

Being a Parent

I would not trade fatherhood for anything in the world. Being a dad is one of the most gratifying experiences and I am very proud.

But man, can the tough times wear on you. Really, I have nothing to bitch about, and I don’t want to complain. Just need to write to release it from me.

My 4 year old over the past 3-4 days, has been real crabby. His schedule (between me and his mom) has not changed. His sleep patterns are normal. He is eating just fine.

But he really has had a hard time picking out his clothes and shoes. If it is not exactly as he wishes, he throws this huge tantrum. He was with his mom for the past few nights and she said the crying, kicking and screaming were tough on her. My ex and her husband had to hold him down this morning to get him dressed.

We came up with a solution. After his bath at night, he is to pick out his clothes for the next day. I tried this tonight. And suddenly, he likes nothing. We even fought over his pj’s. I finally had to leave him in his room crying. And it hurt to do that, but he needs to learn.

I am so glad my ex and I can co-parent well together. We talked twice today and were on the same page every time.

I hope the morning goes well. Keeping my fingers crossed. 

I love my little buddy to pieces, just sometimes it is hard. But that is ok. It is teaching me patience. 

Ice cream…..the solution to all parenting problems.

Ice cream…..the solution to all parenting problems.